Hello from the gang at XV HQ, reporting in with a review of magical March. It’s fair to say we never sit still, but this doesn’t always mean zipping cushions into covers (although we love doing that too). For us, March has been all about forging relationships and making connections – with customers, contacts and more.
We love collaborations, and that’s why we’re happy to make regular appearances within the pages of nautical titles like Classic Boat magazine, and the Iconic Hotel Group’s customer magazine – if you’re a reader, see if you can spot us…
Partnerships are key when it comes to running a business, and we’re thrilled to announce a new collaboration with Water Lodges, check out their insta page here. These gorgeous floating apartments are just as they sound – designer homes moored against a tranquil backdrop of boats and blue skies. We’ve been asked to kit out these dwellings with perfectly matched homewares; the lucky customers then get to relax in their new boathouse with gorgeous accessories.
Last month we talked about a new venture with the Wildlife Trust; we can now reveal a bit more about the new range that marks the partnership. Five cushion designs will tell an underwater story of marine life in rich tones of green and blue. Look out for our local IoW seal swimming through kelp forests, sea horses, fishes, an anemone in bright pinks and reds (a radical colour choice for us), and a range of throws in stunning abstract designs.
Now for some science: our grey and white cotton fabric, for bedding, is undergoing testing to see if we can use a new recycled polyester cotton, made from 50% recycled plastic. While that’s going on we’ve also spent time at XV Sew, the latest foal in our XV stable. Working closely with head seamstress Anne, we’ve learned all kinds of new things, including how to attach a logo. Way trickier than you think, it’s a study in patience and tenacity! We’ll get back to you with our progress on that, meanwhile we’re happy to leave Anne in charge.
Anne’s embroidery business is one of many local ventures we’ve been happy to adopt; it’s always so rewarding to support local communities. In March we parcelled up some lovely orders for my favourite Cowes spa, BeCalmed, the Waterfront Restaurant, and we also chatted to New Forest Rangers. We’re happy to keep our collaborations local, and we’re nothing if not diverse!
On everyone’s minds right now is Easter, a welcome break that’s perfectly timed as we hit the first quarter of 2021. How will you spend yours? Typically, we’ll be busy unpacking our brand new Easter throws in grey and yellow, perfectly matched to our Solent Cardinals range and ideal for keeping off the spring chill. Wrap one round your shoulders then take your early morning cuppa into the sunshine.
With one eye always on the horizon, we’ve much to look forward to. We’re keeping our fingers crossed for our first destination shop (hello Yarmouth!) and we’ve bagged a stand at the Lymington Sea Food Festival in July. We’ve collaborated with Muddy Stilettos (the urban guide to the countryside) and we’ve a whole feature in Her Magazine for Hampshire. Meanwhile online we’ve teamed up with It Won’t Cost The Earth, a website selling all things sustainable (right up our alley).
Further afield, our partner in the US, Macbella, has been spreading the XV Stripes word up and down the west coast of America. Palm tree with your pillow, anyone?
Do we ever stop? That’s the beauty of doing something we love: we’ve no intention of slowing down, in fact we’re racing into April full tilt with more ideas, collaborations and designs, some of which have come from you. We love hearing your comments, suggestions, follows and likes so please keep them coming.
Until next time, happy Easter from XV HQ!